One of the biggest mistakes made by inventors is to blurt out exactly what is on their mind with no rational filter in place. “We'll all make millions with this product!”
You are very excited about the potential of your new invention. To wit, you love it, all of your friends love it (or, at least that is what they tell you) and you just know there is nothing out there just like your product or, at least as good as your product. Right?
Wrong, almost none of what you have just thought is correct:
- You love it ….. okay that is correct.
- Your friends love it …. no, they love you and hope somehow this invention is going to work.
- There is nothing out there just like your product, or at least as good as your product ….. Almost certainly not true, there is something like your product, maybe better.
Drink the Koolaid, but Don't Give it to Anyone Else
Let me clarify one thing. I am not some sort of Spock-like character who believes that only logic and rational thinking matters, that passion and emotions are blindfolds that have no place in the business world.
Everyone who has ever succeeded at anything that matters, from Einstein to Steve Jobs, was emotional and passionate about what they were doing – driving them to work long, hard hours, day after day to improve their craft and their product and rebuff their critics.
You must fervently believe in what you are doing if you are to succeed – I call that ‘drinking the Koolaid'. But don't give it to anyone else.
When you show your invention to a potential licensee or business partner, stick to the known objective facts. But use them to shape an exciting picture and future.
How big is the addressable market? What, specifically differentiates your invention from other similar products selling in the marketplace? Have you sold your product to others, and; if so, for how much to how many people? What do they say about the product? Is your product easier to use? Does it work better or last longer? Provide them with answers to as many such questions as you can and let the facts speak for themselves.
And, maybe, if you are very fortunate, and you present a compelling case …. those listening to you, evaluating the facts, may quietly think to themselves:
“We'll all make millions with this product!”